German President Concludes Visit to Lebanon

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier concluded a three-day official visit to Lebanon on Wednesday at the invitation of President Michel Aoun, the National News Agency reported.

Steinmeier had met Aoun, Speaker Nabih Berri, Prime Minister Saad Hariri and Muslim and Christian spiritual leaders during his visit.

Meeting with Hariri on Tuesday, they discussed Berlin's participation in upcoming international conferences aimed at shoring up Lebanon's security forces and boosting its economy.

Steinmeier had also met with Christian and Muslim spiritual leaders in Lebanon on the second day of his visit to the tiny Mediterranean country, which has been struggling with the fallout from the civil war in neighboring Syria.

Lebanon, which hosts around a million Syrian refugees, is gearing up for three international conferences to be held in the coming months to bolster its economy and support its army and security forces.

Steinmeier, who arrived in Lebanon Monday from neighboring Jordan, also met Tuesday with German troops who serve as part of a United Nations force. The meeting was held on board a German vessel at the port of Beirut, where he was met by the commander of the German troops in Lebanon.

Germany has 126 soldiers contributing to the UNIFIL mission in Lebanon, including the Maritime Task Force, deployed since October 2006, which supports the Lebanese navy in securing the country's maritime borders.

Source: Naharnet, Associated Press

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